Leaders of the N.C. Democratic Party said ahead of the president’s “Keep America Great” rally in Greenville on Wednesday that Pitt County is not Trump country.

North Carolina Democratic Party Chairman Wayne Goodwin, Pitt County Democratic Party Chairman Charles McLawhorn and County Commissioner Ann Huggins, as well as other Democratic supporters, gathered at the Town Common to discuss ways that Trump and the GOP have hurt eastern North Carolina and the need for a Democratic president.

McLawhorn said he wanted “to remind everyone that this is not Trump country. Pitt County voted for Secretary (of State Hillary) Clinton by a wide margin in 2016 (52 percent to 45 percent) and for Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012. In 2020, Pitt County will vote overwhelmingly for the Democratic nominee for President, whomever the nominee is.”

Goodwin said that the president has broken promises he made that affect the economy and health care.

“Trump promised middle-class tax cuts,” Goodwin said. “Instead, it’s been a windfall for corporations and taxes are expected to rise for North Carolina working families by 2027... Layoffs have continued under Trump’s tenure and his tax scam actually incentivizes companies to move jobs overseas ... Donald Trump and the GOP have waged an all-out attack to undermine health care for millions of Americans — increasing costs through his efforts to sabotage our health care system and trying to gut protections for people with pre-exisiting conditions.”

Huggins said that President Trump’s broken promises have also hurt military communities and anyone who has been touched by recent hurricanes that have ravaged eastern North Carolina.

“Our military and veteran communities are incredibly important to our state ... We need to be investing in them — to better take care of our veteran communities, ensure our military is ready and provide for people who have given so much to our state and country ... President Trump came here to eastern North Carolina and told us that he would take care of our military communities and that Mexico would pay for the wall. But, instead, it’s our military communities who are paying for it,” she said.

“When (Trump) campaigned in North Carolina in 2016, (he) told us he would help us recover from (Hurricane) Matthew. Now, after Florence hit North Carolina too, many of us are still waiting for that help.

“Eastern North Carolinians are resilient. But we deserve a president and a Congress who will follow through on what they say they’ll do, not turn their back on us once they get elected,” Huggins said.

Martha Johnson, a resident of Tarboro, attended the event.

“I feel like democracy has been hijacked by the current administration,” Johnson said, “Americans need to get their moral compass back.”

“(America) can only be as great as its leadership,” she said.

Johnson had brought with her a few posters that she had made with slogans that said “Fake President,” “True Christians Against Trump,” and “Get back democracy for America.” She said she planned to take the posters over to the president’s rally.

“Because (Trump) is president, we welcome him to Pitt County,” McLawhorn said. “And we ask him not to screw up our country. You say you will make America great again. You cannot do that if you are willing to tear it apart with racial politics and pitting one American against another American. Take a cue from the Greatest Generation: Obey the law. Play by the rules. Tell the truth.”